Historically The Lancaster Academy was known as The Lancaster School and the previous Ofsted report relates to The Lancaster School. The Lancaster School was visited by Ofsted over two years ago in January 2016. Since then we have been working hard to improve and we have made significant progress. The Academy is subject to regular formal reviews by the Department for Education and in a recent external review, commissioned by the CEO of the Learning without Limits Academy trust, Mrs Denise Newsome, many positives were highlighted, including:
- The Principal is inspirational in her drive for improvement. She has a clarity of vision and a great determination to address the many issues facing the school when she took over as leader. She and her senior team have produced a comprehensive self-evaluation and development plan that covers each and every issue where the academy has been underperforming. Systems have systematically been put into place to bring about change. These include effective behaviour management strategies which have resulted in significantly reducing the number of behavioural incidents compared with the same time last year and establishing a learning environment that is, in most lessons, calm and orderly.
- The quality of teaching and learning has been robustly addressed and high expectations established. Staffing is now more stable and leaders have ensured that quality assurance systems are comprehensive.
- Relationships between adults and students are, in the main, warm and supportive. The principal and her senior team lead by example in establishing their high expectations for behaviour. Boys are polite and helpful to visitors.
- The recent change to a two-year KS3 curriculum, with students starting their GCSE preparation in year 9, has enabled a more engaging and appropriate curriculum to be delivered in KS4. More time is given to English and maths and students are able to choose from more vocational options.
- Middle leaders have a good understanding of the academy’s vision and subject leaders are beginning to take more responsibility in holding teachers within their areas to account for student progress.